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Ah, New Year's Eve — a magical evening filled with champagne, kisses at the stroke of midnight and, of course, a fresh start to the year ahead. Too bad in real life it's so much more often filled with overpriced dinners, obnoxious drunks and broken resolutions. (Yes, we often do manage to break our resolutions before even crawling into bed.) In other words, New Year's Eve almost always blows … yet somehow in the movies it's so damn perfect.
In honor of Hollywood's optimistic vision for the year's most stressful night, here's a compilation of the nine greatest moments caught on celluloid as the clock strikes 12. It may not be as good as the real thing … because it's even better. Happy New Year, indeed.
1. 'Sleepless in Seattle' (1993)
- Elizabeth Durand
It's inevitable that as time goes by, we will lose some of our favorite stars. And yet, year after year, it never gets any easier to look back on the great entertainers who had died over the previous 12 months.
Still, it's important to remember the legacies of the people who enhanced our own lives over the years with their talent, style and love of cinema. Here's a look at some of the many wonderful Hollywood talents who passed away in 2012.
One of the most successful, beloved and influential pop stars of the last quarter century, Whitney Houston also became a Hollywood power in the '90s thanks to her roles in blockbusters like "The Bodyguard" and "The Preacher's Wife." Though she had her very public ups and downs over the past decade, Houston was in the process of making a career comeback on the big screen with the musical "Sparkle. »
- Scott Harris
When writer/director Nora Ephron passed away in June, the industry lost not only an iconic filmmaker, but, it could be said, the grand dame of the romantic-comedy genre. Though she hadn't been as active in recent years, her seminal "Sleepless in Seattle" and "When Harry Met Sally..." continue to be archetypes for what a whip-smart yet heartwarming tale of boy meets girl should be. So it's curious, then, that as we were recalling Ephron's achievements, the category was experiencing heartache of its own—with one of its least lustrous years in recent memory.
Of course, the questionable quality of romantic comedies isn't a new discussion; it's one we've been having for at least the last five years, if not the last decade. (Can you believe it's been nine years since "Love Actually" was all around theaters?) But, perhaps even more telling, the box-office returns on these films were equally inconsistent. »
- Amy Wilkinson
Tom Hanks has a problem with his dressing room.
The two-time Oscar winner and generally agreed-upon national treasure has just arrived backstage at UCLA's Freud Playhouse, dragging a duffel bag in each hand with his wife, Rita Wilson, trailing behind. (Wilson's wearing a neck brace, for some reason.) It's been 35 years since Hanks made a living in a place like the Freud – a 567-seat theater whose last big show was a student production of A Chorus Line – and though he has a reputation as a down-to-earth, easygoing guy, he's also, »
Along with the new Blu-ray and DVD release of Benh Zeitlin's "Beasts of the Southern Wild," Twentieth Century Fox has created a couple of interactive features to accompany the film. The first is a "Hushpuppy Digital Flipbook," and the second is the mini-essay "Single Dads in Films," which focuses on the father-daughter/son relationship in contemporary cinema. The digital flipbook includes Hushpuppy quotes that can be played aloud, and the trailer and stills from the film. The short essay compares the single parent relationships in "Sleepless in Seattle," "The Pursuit of Happyness," "Finding Nemo," "Love, Actually" and "The Holiday." (Notice how all these titles are either Oscar-nominated, Oscar-winning, or holiday-themed.) Zeitlin recently won a Gotham Award for Best Breakthrough Director for "Beasts," and the film earned both a Best Picture and Best Female Lead nod in the Indie »
- Beth Hanna
While making the press rounds for Silver Linings Playbook, Robert De Niro confirmed that he will reunite with Al Pacino in Martin Scorsese's I Heard You Paint Houses (formerly known as The Irishman). Granted Scorsese's plate is rather full and there's no telling when he'll actually get around making Houses, but it got us thinking of other movie acting duos that we'd like to see reunite on the big screen. Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan If you're talking '90s rom-com duos, Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan have to be at the top of the list. From Joe Versus the Volcano, Sleepless in Seattle and You've Got Mail, movie audiences couldn't get enough of the acting pair. Then Hanks went dramatic – Cast Away, Road to Perdition, The Terminal, The Da Vinci Code...
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How times have changed. The summer blockbusters of 1993? "Jurassic Park," "Last Action Hero" (sad trumpet), "Sleepless In Seattle," "In the Line of Fire" and "The Fugitive." Not too shabby. The blockbusters of 2013 when "Jurassic Park 3D" stomps into theaters? "Iron Man 3," "The Hangover Part III," "Star Trek Into Darkness," "Fast & Furious 6" -- those are all coming within a month of the Steven Spielberg hit. Food for thought. Trailers have changed too. And you can see that in effect by checking out the spot for "Jurassic Park 3D" below and then comparing it to the original. Granted, most folks already know the story, so the focus now is on stressing the Braaahm-tacular moments, teasing the big set pieces and scenes we all remember and reminding everyone that Jeff Goldbum is the greatest. Now, why this needs to be in 3D is beyond us, but hey, more money in the bank. »
- Kevin Jagernauth
You don't hear many people talk about Punchline. The 1987 dramedy about stand-up comedians hoping for their big break stars Tom Hanks at the height of his early career (it hit theaters only a few months after Big). This was a Tom Hanks that was beginning to change, though, moving away from the more overt comedies like Splash, Bachelor Party and The Money Pit in order to attempt material with more emotional weight. And Punchline gave him that, though it also brought Hanks into a sort of darker period in his career. He followed Punchline with The Burbs, Turner & Hooch, Joe Versus the Volcano, The Bonfore of the Vanities and Radio Flyer before reigniting his career with a turn in 1992's A League of Their Own. That lead to Sleepless in Seattle, which brought him...
- Erik Davis
You don't hear many people talk about Punchline. The 1987 dramedy about standup comedians hoping for their big break starred Tom Hanks at the height of his early career (it hit theaters only a few months after Big). This was a Tom Hanks that was beginning to change, though, moving away from the more overt comedies like Splash, Bachelor Party and The Money Pit in order to attempt material with more emotional weight. And Punchline gave him that, though it also brought Hanks into a sort of darker period in his career. He followed Punchline with The Burbs, Turner & Hooch, Joe Versus the Volcano, The Bonfore of the Vanities and Radio Flyer before reigniting his career with a turn in 1992's A League of Their Own. That lead to Sleepless in Seattle, which brought him...
- Erik Davis
Thursday, November 1st and Friday Nov 2nd during the 2012 American Film Market for its third year in a row, DreamAgo, in partnership with Hamilton International, the renowned Swiss watch company, will host "Hamilton Helps DreamAgo Connect". Known for its annual Plume & Pellicule screenwriting workshop held annually in Sierre, Switzerland and for the development, support and promotion of films that make a difference, the program has 3 key phases.
First phase is a speed dating-style pitch session designed to introduce selected screenwriters, who benefitted from DreamAgo's screenwriting lab in Switzerland, to well-known producers and distributors. Screenwriters in attendance will have 10 minutes with a producer to present their project before moving on to the next producer and starting again. Among the producers participating are Linda Obst (Hope Floats, Sleepless In Seattle, How To Lose A Guy In 10 Days), Golan Ramras (One Missed Call, The Incredible Hulk), Kelley Feldsott Reynolds (The Flyboys, The Unsaid, Five Fingers), Sukee Chew (Jesus Henry Christ, Fireflies In The Garden), Christina Piovesan (Red Lights, The Whistleblower, Amreeka), Paula Mazanedo-Schmit (VP Film Finances Inc.), David Miller (Amal Sidarth, My Foolish Heart) and Vanessa Adkins (Unthinkable, A Late Quartet).
Second, the program offers the opportunity for any WGA writer to propose a feature project and try to win a six weeks Residency in Sierre (Switzerland), all costs covered. Among the more than 250 pitches submitted, DreamAgo & the Residence Ruffieux will select 15 projects and each of the writers will be given the opportunity to pitch it in person for 10 minutes. The lucky winner will be revealed during a brunch at the Swiss Consulate.
Third, DreamAgo will present a panel, in partnership with The Writers Guild of America, the topic this year: How to Preserve Your Vision When Those Around You Won't Leave It Alone? (Hint: An International Production Might Be Your Solution), on Friday, November 2nd. Panelists confirmed for this event include Barry Navidi (Producer, The Merchant Of Venice, Wild Salome), Sydney Levine (Creator of Sydney's Buzz a Network Blog on Indiewire, Founder of Film Finders), Vince Fischer (International Agent, Creator of the International Eci Agency), and Neil Landau (Writer, Tad The Lost Explorer).
Additionally, DreamAgo will also have a part in the celebrated Hamilton Behind the Camera Awards that pay tribute to the off-screen talents. The 6th edition will take place in Hollywood on October 28, just prior to the start of Afm. DreamAgo, in collaboration with Hamilton, has selected Zoe Kazan to receive the Best Screenwriter Award for Ruby Sparks. The award will be presented by Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris, the filmmaking duo behind Little Miss Sunshine.
DreamAgo is a nonprofit organization that brings together film professionals of all nationalities: screenwriters, directors, producers and distributors. Its purpose is to nurture and promote the creation of cinematic works on all continents, offering support at each stage of their development. In short: from script to screen. DreamAgo was founded in February 2005 by Pascale Rey and Soula Saad.
Hamilton was founded in 1892 in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, USA. Hamilton watches combine the American spirit with the unrivalled precision of the latest Swiss movements and technologies. Known for its innovative design, Hamilton has a strong foothold in Hollywood, with products appearing in over 300 films. The brand also boasts a strong aeronautical heritage. Hamilton is a member of the Swatch group, the largest watch manufacturer and distributor in the world with 160 production sites in Switzerland.
- Sydney Levine
Tom Hanks has earned just about all the accolades you can earn as a movie actor, but he's never done Broadway in his career. That's about to change.
Hanks will star in "Lucky Guy," a play by the late Nora Ephron about Mike McAlary, a New York newspaper columnist who became famous for his reporting on the NYPD. McAlary won a Pulitzer Prize in 1998 for a series of columns on the Abner Louima case before dying later that year of colon cancer.
The play, according to the New York Times, will focus on "the scandal- and graffiti-ridden New York of the 1980s" as seen through the eyes of McAlary.
Ephron originally had conceived of "Lucky Guy" as a movie but then opted for the stage prior to her death in June. Hanks previously starred in two of Ephron's movies, "Sleepless in Seattle" and "You've Got Mail."
George C. Wolfe, a »
Tom Hanks has signed up to star in a new Broadway play written by the late Nora Ephron. The playwright had been working on Lucky Guy in the years leading up to her death in June. Hanks will make his Broadway debut as the New York tabloid columnist Mike McAlary in the world premiere of the play in March 2013. The Forrest Gump actor - who worked with Ephron on her movies Sleepless in Seattle and You've Got Mail - had already been in negotiations for the project at the time of her death. Ephron had been developing Lucky Guy as a movie, before adapting it for the stage. Mike McAlary was a hugely (more) »
- By Tom Eames
11 October 2012 10:24 AM, PDT | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »
New York -- Confirming a casting coup that had been rumored since before the death of Nora Ephron, Tom Hanks will make his Broadway debut in the late playwright and screenwriter's Lucky Guy, about the career highs and lows of controversial tabloid reporter Mike McAlary in 1980s New York. The two-time Oscar winning actor had a long association and friendship with Ephron, having starred in her 1993 hit, Sleepless in Seattle, and You've Got Mail in 1998. Photos: From 'When Harry Met Sally' to 'Sleepless in Seattle': 11 Movies From Nora Ephron's Celebrated Career The play will be directed by
- David Rooney
When she first walked onto the screen in July of 1995, it was love at first sight. America was immediately smitten by a ditzy, glitzy Beverly Hills fashion plate named Cher Horowitz. Well, almost everyone. When Alicia Silverstone first read writer-director Amy Heckerling’s script for Clueless in the back of a limo coming home from shooting one of her iconic ’90s Aerosmith videos, she didn’t get Cher. “I thought, ‘Who is this girl?’” says Silverstone. “I had nothing in common with her at all. I thought she was a materialistic, annoying little bitch.” As if!
Over the past 17 years, »
- Chris Nashawaty
Mindy Kaling's new series "The Mindy Project," which had its premiere last night on Fox, is not "Girls." It's not on HBO, so it doesn't have the aggressive nudity of Lena Dunham's series, and the sex that takes place in the pilot happens off screen. Kaling's Mindy Lahiri has a few years and quite of bit of career success on Dunham's Hannah Horvath -- she's a doctor, not a writer, and as far as we can tell she's a pretty good one. But like Dunham, Kaling is the kind of actress you used to see unjustly relegated to the role of the sidekick, the funny best friend. She doesn't look like the type of leading lady common to the romantic comedies with which her character is so enamored, just as Dunham isn't exactly a match for the women of "Sex in the City," the series both followed and rebuked by "Girls. »
- Alison Willmore
"A movie! That's your problem! You don't want to be in love. You want to be in love in a movie."
So says Rosie O'Donnell's character in Nora Ephron's hit romantic comedy "Sleepless in Seattle," which is a good way to sum up the main character in "The Mindy Project." Mindy Lahiri, played by "Office" alum Mindy Kaling, who also created the show, is a successful Obgyn whose love life has never really taken off -- and she desperately wants it to, in the form of an Ephron or Sandra Bullock movie.
Dr. Lahiri is surrounded by the typical rom-com characters: a sexy coworker whose lurid advances she is trying to resist (Ed Weeks) and the coworker she snarks with like an old married couple (Chris Messina), plus a guest-starring role in the pilot by Ed Helms as the first of what we can assume is many first dates gone wrong. »
How big a "Singles" fan are you? You may have worn out your CD of the best-selling soundtrack and made a pilgrimage to the landmark apartment house in Seattle. And you probably know all the cameos: Eric Stoltz is the mime that won't shut up, Tim Burton is the dating video director, and that's Jeremy Piven as a hyper supermarket clerk chatting up lead Campbell Scott. But for the film's 20th anniversary (it was released on Sept. 18, 1992) we've unearthed 25 things you might not know about "Singles," including that it was once set in Arizona or that it might have starred Johnny Depp(!). 1. "Singles" was in the works as early as 1984 and was originally going to be set in Phoenix, Arizona. 2. The movie took a different course after the 1990 death of Andrew Wood, the lead singer of Mother Love Bone (whose remaining members would go on to form Pearl Jam.). As »
- Jessie Heyman
Yes, you should talk about a Revolution this fall.
And definitely investigate Elementary.
Now, in our latest preview of upcoming new shows, we dive into The Mindy Project, the upcoming Fox comedy that ought to be on every TV Fanatic's DVR list...
When it Airs: Tuesday at 9:30/8:30c on Fox, starting September 25.
What It's About: Kaling stars as Mindy Lahiri, an obstetrician who desperately wants her life to follow the stories she so adores in romantic comedies such as Sleepless in Seattle and everything Nora Ephron ever wrote.
Why You Should Make an Appointment: Because Mindy Kaling is positively hilarious. Do you need a more specific reason? Fine. Her character worships at the alter of rom-coms and remains blissfully (for viewers) unaware that she is essentially living in one herself due to a fiery relationship with Messina's Dr. »
- email@example.com (Matt Richenthal)
By Rachel Bennett
Television Editor & Columnist
Every Friday, Rachel recaps the week’s major TV-related news, announcements, and gossip!
* * *
• NBC’s The New Normal has found a new home: After Ksl-tv of Salt Lake City, Utah, refused to air the comedy, Ogden, Utah, station Kucw-tv has picked it up and will show it on Saturdays before Saturday Night Live.
• Producer J.J. Abrams (ABC’s Lost) and show runner J.H. Wyman (Fox’s Fringe) have sold a comedy to Fox. The series, which is still untitled, centers on a future that sees Los Angeles police officers work with human-like androids.
• NBC’s The Voice will have a three-night premiere, as opposed to a two-night one, this fall. The change will put »
- Rachel Bennett
Nora Ephron during production of Julie & Julia, 2009. credit: ©Columbia Pictures
In celebration of writer and filmmaker Nora Ephron, “Julie & Julia” (2009) will screen as the final installment of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ Oscars Outdoors summer film series on Friday, September 7, at 7:30 p.m. at the new open-air theater located on the Academy Hollywood campus. Chef, restaurateur and radio host Evan Kleiman of Kcrw’s “Good Food” will host a pre-screening discussion with some of Ephron’s friends and colleagues. The program is presented to coincide with the American Cinematheque’s celebration of Ephron films later in September.
Ephron, who earned Oscar® nominations for “Silkwood,” “When Harry Met Sally.” and “Sleepless in Seattle,” was also a renowned cook and dinner party hostess. Her appreciation of fine food led to her adapting and then directing “Julie & Julia,” which chronicles the year in which author Julie Powell cooked her »
- Michelle McCue
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